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Chemical Alley: References

Following is a selection of the many references available relating to Sarnia's Chemical Alley. At the end of each excerpt is a clickable link to the full text of the article.

Sarnia First Nation

Statemaster Statistical Database

Aamjiwnaang First Nation, also known as the "Chippewas of Sarnia First Nation," is located on the St. Clair River, affectionately called by the local population as "Chemical Alley." This First Nation is plagued by numerous chemical affective disorders, including mercury poisoning. Elders in the community recall collecting mercury from the local toxic waste dump by pouring water, then selling the collected mercury on the black market. More...

Canada's Chemical Valley

Ecojustice Media Backgrounder, October 4, 2007

- The Sarnia area is one of the most heavily industrialized in Canada, accounting for more than 40% of Canada's total chemical industry

- There are 62 industrial facilities within 25 kilometres of the Aamjiwnaang reserve and city of Sarnia, including 46 NPRI facilities

- Sarnia is home to three of the top ten air polluters in Ontario from 2005: Ontario Power Generation’s Lambton Generating Station, ranked #3, Imperial Oil’s Sarnia Refinery ranked #6 and Shell Canada’s Sarnia Manufacturing Centre, ranked #10

- The area also has 8 additional facilities that released over 1 million kilograms of combined air releases: Suncor Energy Products Sarnia Refinery, Cabot Canada plant, NOVA Chemicals Corunna Site, Fibrex Installations Sarnia Plant, Transalta Energy Sarnia Regional Cogeneration Plant, Terra International Canada Terra Nitrogen Plant, and Lanxess East Plant... More...

Humanity at Risk: Are the Males Going First?

by Martin Mittelstaedt, Globe and Mail, September 20, 2008

Something is happening to today’s boys and men: Fewer are being born compared with girls, they’re having more trouble in school, virility and fertility are down and testicular cancer rates are up. Now, scientists say these ‘fragile males’ may be more vulnerable than females to pollutants, affecting their development as early as the womb. If so, writes Martin Mittelstaedt, it could be a bigger threat to our future than global warming. The first clue was how difficult it was becoming to find enough young boys to cobble together a baseball team. Then, women in prenatal groups started remarking on how everyone in their groups was having girls... More...

SEX RATIOS: CHEMICAL VALLEY: Male birth dearth persists on Ontario reserve

Martin Mittelstaedt, Environment Reporter, March 27, 2008

A small native community living in the shadows of Sarnia's chemical valley has had an unusual distinction: Researchers believe it has one of the most skewed sex ratios in the world... More...

Pollution Laws

CBC, "The Current", August 10, 2004

They don't call it "Chemical Valley" for nothing. As you wind your way along the banks of the St. Clair River in southwestern Ontario, you probably won't see much wildlife. What you will see are more than 30 petrochemical plants huddled between Sarnia and Windsor.

And as you might expect, the region has experienced more than its fair share of pollution and environmental accidents. In the past 20 years, hazardous chemicals have been dumped in the St. Clair River more than 7-hundred times, making it one of Canada's most polluted spots... More...

Sarnia, Ontario (Wikipedia)


When World War II threatened tropical sources of natural latex for rubber, Sarnia was selected as the site to spearhead development of synthetic petroleum-based rubbers for war materials, and Polymer corporation was built by Dow Chemical at the request of the Government of Canada. Large pipelines bring Alberta oil to Sarnia, where oil refining and petrochemical production have become mainstays of the city's economy. Shell Canada, Imperial Oil, and Suncor Energy (Sunoco) operate refineries in Sarnia. Large salt beds found under the city became a source of chlorine and another significant ingredient in the success of the "Chemical Valley". Chemical companies operating in Sarnia include NOVA Chemicals, Bayer (Lanxess and H.C. Starck), Imperial Oil, Dow Chemical, Royal Group Technologies, Cabot Corporation and Ethyl Corporation... More...

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